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The Pura Belpré Award , established in 1996, is presented to a Latino/Latina writer and illustrator whose work best portrays, affirms, and celebrates the Latino cultural experience in an outstanding work of literature for children and youth. It is co-sponsored by the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a division of the American Library Association (ALA), and the National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish-Speaking (REFORMA), an ALA affiliate.

The award is named after Pura Belpré, the first Latina librarian at the New York Public Library. As a children's librarian, storyteller, and author, she enriched the lives of Puerto Rican children in the U.S.A. through her pioneering work of preserving and disseminating Puerto Rican folklore.

It has been given every other year since 1996. Beginning with the 2009 award, it will be given annually.

2011 Winners

Belpre (Illustrator) Honor Books

"Fiesta BabiesFiesta Babies" illustrated by Amy Córdova, written by Carmen Tafolla, published by Tricycle Press, an imprint of the Crown Publishing Group, a division of Random House, Inc.
"Me, Frida" illustrated by David Diaz, written by Amy Novesky, published by Abrams Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Abrams
"Dear Primo: A Letter to My Cousin" illustrated  and written by Duncan Tonatiuh, published by Abrams Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Abrams

Belpre (Author) Award

"The Dreamer" written by Pam Munoz Ryan, illustrated by Peter Sis, published by Scholastic Press, an imprint of Scholastic Inc.

Belpre (Author) Honor Books

"Ole! Flamenco" written by George Ancona, photographs by George Ancona, published by Lee & Low Books Inc.
"The Firefly Letters: A Suffragette's Journey to Cuba" written by Margarita Engle, published by Henry Holt and Company, LLC
"90 Miles to Havana" written by Enrique Flores-Galbis, published by Roaring Brook Press, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishing

Pura Belpré (Illustrator) Award 2010

Book Fiesta!: Celebrate Children’s Day/Book Day; Celebremos El día de los niños/El día de los libros, illustrated by Rafael López

Three Belpré Illustrator Honor Books were selected: Diego: Bigger Than Life, illustrated by David Diaz, written by Carmen T. Bernier-Grand and published by Marshall Cavendish Children; My Abuelita, illustrated by Yuyi Morales, written by Tony Johnston and published by Harcourt Children’s Books, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; and Gracias Thanks, illustrated by John Parra, written by Pat Mora and published by Lee & Low Books Inc.

Pura Belpré (Author) Award 2010

Return to Sender by written Julia Alvarez

Two Belpré Author Honor Books were named : Diego: Bigger Than Life, written by Carmen T. Bernier-Grand, illustrated by David Diaz and published by Marshall Cavendish Children; and Federico García Lorca, written by Georgina Lázaro, illustrated by Enrique S. Moreiro and published by Lectorum Publications Inc.

2009 Pura Belpré Award Winners & Honor Books

 

Winner 2009 Belpré Illustrator Award: Just in Case: A Trickster Tale and Spanish Alphabet Book illustrated by Yuyi Morales, is the winner of the . It is a Neal Porter Book published by Roaring Brook Press, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishing Holdings Limited Partnership.

Winner of the 2009 Belpré Author Award (narrative): The Surrender Tree: Poems of Cuba's Struggle for Freedom, by Margarita Engle, is the . The book is published by Henry Holt and Company, LLC.

Three Belpre Illustrator Honor Books for illustration were named:

Papa and Me, illustrated by Rudy Gutierrez, written by Arthur Dorros, published by Rayo, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers;

The Storyteller's Candle / La velita de los cuentos, illustrated by Lulu Delacre, written by Lucia Gonzalez, published by Children's Book Press;

What Can You Do with a Rebozo? illustrated by Amy Cordova, written by Carmen Tafolla, published by Tricycle Press, an imprint of Ten Speed Press.

Three Belpre Author Honor Books were named:

Just in Case, written by Yuyi Morales, a Neal Porter Book published by Roaring Brook Press, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishing Holdings Limited Partnership;

Reaching Out, written by Francisco Jimenez, published by Houghton Mifflin Company;

The Storyteller's Candle / La velita de los cuentos, written by Lucia Gonzalez and published by Children's Book Press.

 

2008 Winners

Narrative

The Poet Slave of Cuba: A Biography of Juan Francisco Manzano, a collection of haunting poems, uses multiple voices to illuminate the daily terror and hypocrisy of the slave system. Celebrating Manzano's irrepressible spirit and creativity, this book is based on Manzano's autobiographical notes and poems. After witnessing young Manzano's harsh punishments for reading and writing, readers will marvel at his enduring strength and persistence to attain freedom.

“The Poet Slave of Cuba is a heartbreaking, memorable story of love, determination and hope. The stark language and vivid imagery provide a sensory experience that allows the reader to enter another time and place,” said Hatfield.

For illustration:

Los Gatos Black on Halloween, illustrated by Yuyi Morales, written by Marisa Montes (Holt)

“A rhyming text describes spooky monsters of many types gathering for a ball in Los Gatos Black on Halloween. However, the rollicking fun is interrupted by the scariest creatures of all in a surprise ending that will delight readers of all ages. Morales' eerily glowing illustrations capture the blend of traditional Halloween and Día de los Muertos symbols, matching the humorous interplay of Spanish and English in the text. Historical allusions and whimsical figures delight the eye in this timeless story,” said Award Committee Chair Jean Hatfield.

2008 Honor Book- Narrative

Frida: ¡Viva la vida! Long Live Life! written and illustrated Carmen T. Bernier-Grand (Marshall Cavendish)

Frida: ¡Viva la vida! Long Live Life! uses lyrical free-verse poems which comprise the heart of a well rounded biographical work for older children. The poems, written in impassioned first-person voice, follow the arc of Frida Kahlo's life from birth to death. The opening birth poem and the closing death poem set a tone of self-determination firmly placing her in history, in her family and in her country.

Martina the Beautiful Cockroach: A Cuban Folktale, retold by Carmen Agra Deedy, illustrated by Michael Austin (Peachtree)

Martina is 21 days old and ready to give her leg in marriage. With the help of her Abuela's shocking advice, she interviews a cast of unlikely suitors to find her true love. Deedy's lively and humorous retelling of this classic Latino folktale sparkles with wit as well as aspects of the Cuban culture.

Los Gatos Black on Halloween , written by Marisa Montes, illustrated by Yuyi Morales (Holt)

From brujas on broomsticks to clattering esqueletos the rhyming text of Los Gatos Black on Halloween, captures a spooky mix of English and Spanish in this humorous tale. The story integrates the traditions of two cultures into a lively tale with a surprise twist that begs to be read aloud and shared with audiences of all ages and cultures.

For illustration:

My Name is Gabito: The Life of Gabriel García Márquez/Me llamo Gabito: la vida de Gabriel García Márquez, illustrated by Raúl Colón, written by Monica Brown (Luna Rising)

Raúl Colón's evocative, tropical illustrations pull the eye into Gabriel García Márquez's imaginative world, introducing children to the early life of this celebrated Colombian author in My Name is Gabito.

My Colors, My World/Mis colores, mi mundo, written and illustrated by Maya Christina Gonzalez (Children's Book Press)

My Colors, My World/Mis colores, mi mundo invites children to a visual feast of vibrant colors and magical realism as they follow young Maya on her journey from sand-covered surroundings to a world overflowing with rich violet and pink hues. Mayan culture and Kahlo-esque influences add electricity to the bold illustrations.

The Pura Belpré Award Winners
1996-Present
2008 Winners

For Narrative:

Medal Winner:
Margarita Engle. The Poet Slave of Cuba: A Biography of Juan Francisco Manzano. Illustrated by Sean Qualls (Holt, 2006)

Honor Books:
Carmen T. Bernier-Grand. Frida: ¡Viva la vida! Long Live Life! (Marshall Cavendish, 2007)
Carmen Agra Deedy. Martina the Beautiful Cockroach: A Cuban Folktale. Illustrated by Michael Austin (Peachtree, 2007)
Marisa Montes. Los Gatos Black on Halloween, illustrated by Yuyi Morales. (Holt, 2006)

For Illustration:

Medal Winner:
Yuyi Morales. Los Gatos Black on Halloween. Written by Marisa Montes. (Holt, 2006)

Honor Books:
Raúl Colón. My Name is Gabito: The Life of Gabriel García Márquez/Me llamo Gabito: la vida de Gabriel García Márquez. Written by Monica Brown. (Luna Rising, 2007)
Maya Christina Gonzalez. My Colors, My World/Mis colores, mi mundo. (Children's Book Press, 2007)

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2006 Winners
For Narrative:

Medal Winner:
Viola Canales. The Tequila Worm. (Wendy Lamb Books, a division of Random House, 2005).

Honor Books:
Carmen T. Bernier-Grand. César: ¡Sí, Se Puede! Yes, We Can! Illustrated by David Diaz. (Marshall Cavendish, 2004)
Pat Mora. Doña Flor: A Tall Tale About a Giant Woman with a Great Big Heart. Illustrated by Raul Colón. (Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House, 2005)
Pam Muñoz Ryan. Becoming Naomi León. (Scholastic Press, 2004)


For Illustration:

Medal Winner:
Raul Colón. Doña Flor: A Tall Tale About a Giant Woman with a Great Big Heart. Written by Pat Mora. (Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House, 2005)

Honor Books:
Selected and illustrated by Lulu Delacre. Arrorró, Mi Niño: Latino Lullabies and Gentle Games. (Lee & Low Books, Inc., 2004)
David Diaz. César: ¡Sí, Se Puede! Yes, We Can! Written by Carmen T. Bernier-Grand. (Marshall Cavendish, 2004)
Rafael López, Illustrator. My Name Is Celia/ Me Llamo Celia: The Life of Celia Cruz/ La Vida de Celia Cruz. Written by Monica Brown. (Luna Rising, a bilingual imprint of Rising Moon, 2004)

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2004 Winners
For Narrative:

Medal Winner:
Julia Alvarez. Before We Were Free. (Alfred A. Knopf, 2002)

Honor Books:
Nancy Osa. Cuba 15. (Delacorte Press, 2003)
Amada Irma Pérez. My Diary from Here to There/Mi Diario de Aquí Hasta Allá. (Children's Book Press)
For Illustration:

Medal Winner:
Yuyi Morales. Just a Minute: A Trickster Tale and Counting Book (Chronicle Books, 2003)

Honor Books:
Robert Casilla, Illustrator. Written by L. King Pérez. First Day in Grapes. (Lee & Low Books, Inc., 2002)
David Diaz, Illustrator. Written by Nancy Andrews-Goebel. The Pot That Juan Built. (Lee & Low Books, Inc., 2002)
Yuyi Morales, Illustrator. Written by Kathleen Krull. Harvesting Hope: The Story of Cesar Chavez. (Harcourt, Inc., 2003)

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2002 Winners
For Narrative:

Medal Winner:
Pam Munoz Ryan. Esperanza Rising (Scholastic Press, 2000)

Honor Books:
Francisco Jiménez. Breaking Through. (Houghton Mifflin Company, 2001)

Francisco X. Alarcón. Iguanas in the Snow. Illustrated by Maya Christina Gonzalez. (Children's Book Press)
For Illustration:

Medal Winner:
Susan Guevara, Illustrator. Written by Gary Soto. Chato and the Party Animals (G.P. Putnam's Sons, 2000)

Honor Book:
Joe Cepeda, Illustrator. Retold by Marisa Montes. Juan Bobo Goes to Work. (HarperCollins, 2000)

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2000 Winners
For Narrative:

Medal Winner:
Alma Flor Ada. Under the Royal Palms: A Childhood in Cuba. (Atheneum Books, 1998).

Honor Books:
Francisco X. Alarcón. From the Bellybutton of the Moon and Other Summer Poems/ Del Ombligo de la Luna y Otro Poemas de Verano. Illustrated by Maya Christina Gonzalez. (Children's Book Press, 1998).

Juan Felipe Herrera. Laughing out Loud, I Fly: Poems in English and Spanish. Illustrated by Karen Barbour. (HarperCollins, 1998).
For Illustration:

Medal Winner:
Carmen Lomas Garza. Magic Windows. (Children's Book Press, 1999).

Honor Books:
George Ancona. Barrio: José's Neighborhood. (Harcourt Brace, 1998).

Felipe Dávalos. The Secret Stars. Text by Joseph Slate. (Marshall Cavendish, 1998).

Amelia Lau Carling. Mama & Papa Have a Store. (Dial Books, 1998).

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1998 Winners
For narrative:

Medal winner:
Martinez, Victor. Parrot in the Oven: mi vida. (Joanna Cotler/HarperCollins, 1996).

Honor Books:
Alarcón, Francisco. Laughing Tomatoes and Other Spring Poems / Jitomates Risueños y otros poemas de primavera illustrated by Maya Christina Gonzalez (Children's Book Press, 1997).

Martinez, Floyd. Spirits of the High Mesa (Arte Público Press, 1997).
For illustration:

Medal Winner:
Snapshots from the Wedding, illustrated by Stephanie Garcia. Text: Gary Soto (Putnam, 1997).

Honor Books:
Lomas Garza, Carmen. In My Family / En mi familia (Children's Book Press, 1996).

Sánchez, Enrique O. The Golden Flower: a Taino Myth from Puerto Rico text by Nina Jaffe (Simon & Schuster, 1996).

Silva, Simón. Gathering the Sun: an Alphabet in Spanish and English text by Alma Flor Ada; English translation by Rosa Zubizarreta (Lothrop, 1997).


1996 Winners
For narrative:

Medal Winner:
Cofer, Judith Ortiz. An Island Like You: Stories of the Barrio (Melanie Kroupa / Orchard Books, 1995).

Honor Books:
González, Lucía. The Bossy Gallito / El Gallo de Bodas: A Traditional Cuban Folktale illustrated by Lulu Delacre (Scholastic, 1994).

Soto, Gary. Baseball in April, and Other Stories (Harcourt, 1994).
For illustration:

Medal Winner:
Guevara, Susan. Chato's Kitchen written by Gary Soto (Putnam, 1995).

Honor Books:
Ancona, George. Pablo Remembers: The Fiesta of the Day of the Dead (Lothrop, 1993).
Also published in a Spanish language edition: Pablo Recuerda: La Fiesta de Día de los Muertos (Lothrop, 199 3).

Delacre, Lulu. The Bossy Gallito / El Gallo de Bodas: A Traditional Cuban Folktale retold by Lucía González (Scholastic, 1994).

Lomas Garza, Carmen. Family Pictures / Cuadros de Familia. Spanish language text by Rosalma Zubizaretta (Children's Book Press, 1990).

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